Enterprise PDM, soon to be known as PDM Professional, has undergone some changes in terms of licensing in 2015 and later. No longer will a new license file be needed to upgrade from one major release to another. Instead, PDM will be utilizing the same type of SolidNetworkLicense Manager as SOLIDWORKS has been using for years. This allows all of the PDM license to be updated and activated online using the serial numbers that you can access from the SOLIDWORKS customer portal. However, this may pose as an issue if you are looking to set up a new test environment for upgrading.
If you are setting up a brand new test environment to try out the upgrade process to make sure everything is working smoothly, you will need some kind of serial number with licenses to actually test everything out. Instead of using your current serial number and taking away license from your production environment, we recommend that you contact your local PDM and SOLIDWORKS reseller and ask them to request a Global Evaluation License from SOLIDWORKS. This will be a 30 day (with 1 expansion to 60 day if needed) evaluation serial number that you can use for your test environment without wasting any licenses from your production environment.
We recommend that a full test environment (New SQL, new SNL, restored database and restored archive files) is set up prior to any production upgrades. This will allow your local IT and PDM administrators the proper tools to test the upgrade process to ensure that there are no major issues or roadblocks that may cause you significant downtime during the production upgrade. Your local value added reseller (VAR) should be able to provide you with the documentation necessary to perform any upgrade, but if you are uncomfortable with the process, we here at InFlow Technology do offer our services to provide a complete upgrade for your production environment, as well as the setup of a complete test environment.
Derek M. Lawson | Consultant - Product Lifecycle Management Solutions